Workers of JUSCO Shenzhen come to Hong Kong to assert their rights
In November 2009, three former workers from AEON—JUSCO Shenzhen (JUSCO), Zhang Liya, Gao Peng and Xiao Xingbing, came to Hong Kong to confront the company, which they argued delayed their wage payments from 1 January 2006 to April 2009.
During the employment period of their labour contracts, they said, the company intentionally delayed payment of wages and compensation for work-related injury, dismissed workers during medical leave, breached the laws, used violence against its workers and suppressed employees who complained. Over the past four years, workers of JUSCO have not been given their basic earning for living and injured workers have not been given legal and basic medical care and living allowances.
The workers came on their own finances and without any union to assist them. They tried to negotiate with the company office, and also engaged in protests in front of the department store in Kornhill, finally also beginning a hunger strike. Several organizations in Hong Kong came to support them, including SACOM.
Finally after repeated attempts to negotiate with management, on 12 November the workers and the management came to a compromise, after their return to Shenzhen. JUSCO continued to deny that it violated any laws, but it agreed to pay the workers compensation. Gao and Xiao accepted 28,000 RMB, and Zhang received 24,000 RMB.
This is a rare instance where workers from China have come themselves to Hong Kong to confront their Hong Kong-based employer, without the guidance from the beginning of any other NGO.
Source: SACOM, Debby Chan